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Southern California Students Can Now Submit Short Films For Consideration for 2021 KCET FINE CUT Festival of Films In Documentary, Animation and Narrative Categories Deadline June 5, 2021

All-New FINE CUT Virtual Speaker Series Offers

Student Filmmakers Continued Film Education and Resources

Every Tuesday at 7pm in April
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Allison Gray


Los Angeles, Calif. – April 1, 2021 – KCET, Southern California's flagship PBS station and home for award-winning public media programming, announced today that the annual FINE CUT Festival of Films is now accepting submissions from local film school students. The festival encourages promising filmmakers who are currently enrolled in Southern California film schools to submit short films (25 minutes or less) in the categories of Documentary, Animation and Narrative for consideration for prizes as well as to be included in a series of one-hour broadcast episodes airing and streaming on KCET and kcet.org/finecut this fall. The deadline to submit is June 5, 2021 at filmfreeway.com/FineCut.

The FINE CUT Festival of Films is KCET’s flagship program showcasing local student filmmaking, with funding made possible by The Bridges / Larson Foundation. In previous years, a variety of prize packages valued between $2,500 and $10,000 were awarded to the winners with a Grand Prize package going to one honoree selected as The Jack Larson Southern California Student Filmmaker Award commemorating FINE CUT founder Jack Larson's commitment to fostering new generations of filmmakers in Southern California.

New to the program this year, is the inaugural FINE CUT virtual speaker series, held on Zoom every Tuesday at 7 p.m. PT in April. This new element of FINE CUT provides the opportunity to dive deep into specific, often mystifying topics for student filmmakers which furthers continuing to offer film education and resources to a new generation of filmmakers. Each event in the series will feature a guest speaker addressing a designated topic, then opening the floor for questions from the virtual audience. Topics and speakers include the following:

The Writers Room, April 6
· Talicia Raggs, Writer/Producer, NCIS: New Orleans, The Originals, Switched at Birth
· Topic: Finding your voice, purpose and power inside the writers room.

Creating Content That Cuts Through, April 13
· Melissa Blake, Writer/Producer, One Mississippi, October Faction, The Wilds.
· Topic: Tap into your unique perspective and craft projects that serve you and promote your material.

The Power of the Pitch, April 20
· Weiko Lin, Screenwriter, Author, Emerson College Professor
· Topic: Harness the power of your personal emotions and connection to the narrative.

Navigating Your Job Search, April 27
· Jill Gilbert, Co-Founder, BRIC Foundation & Producer
· Topic: Getting where you want to go (and sometimes to places you didn’t expect).

Top films submitted for the FINE CUT Festival of Films will be evaluated by a select, to-be-announced panel of judges consisting of esteemed entertainment industry experts. Honorees in each of the three categories and The Jack Larson Award recipient will be awarded in the fall of 2021 during an awards ceremony/screening event. The event will be followed by a workshop where student filmmakers will get to interact with a select lineup of entertainment industry professionals/potential mentors.

The festival is a tribute to FINE CUT founder Jack Larson who was an American actor, librettist, screenwriter and producer who may be best known for his portrayal of photographer/reporter Jimmy Olsen in the 1952-1958 television series “Adventures of Superman.” In the late 1990s Larson approached Southern California’s KCET with the idea of creating a student film series that would provide talented students with the opportunity to have their short films selected for television broadcast. Larson understood how difficult it was for young filmmakers to get broad exposure for their work because, typically, student work is only seen at special screenings and film festivals. Larson thought that public television was an excellent platform for providing critical visibility to emerging filmmakers. Last year, the online submission process garnered over 400 shorts submitted from over 40 Southern California schools. 67% of the 2020 finalists were female directors while 67% had a director that was a person of color. 83% of last year’s submissions included producers that are female while 50% of the main characters featured were people of color.

RULES: Student filmmakers must be at least 18 years of age and currently enrolled or have been enrolled in a Southern California School January 2018 to present. Films completed prior to January 1, 2018, are not eligible for consideration for FINE CUT. Films that have been submitted for FINE CUT consideration in previous years are not eligible for submission for 2021 FINE CUT consideration. All short films selected by the expert judging panel will be part of one of the four one-hour broadcast episodes and all accepted shorts are eligible for awards in the Competition. Short Films must have a total running time of 25 minutes or less, including credits. Read the full rules and regulations at FilmFreeway.com.

Join the conversation on social media using #FineCut and #KCET

Funding for Fine Cut is generously provided by The Bridges/Larson Foundation

About KCET
KCET is part of the donor-supported community institution, the Public Media Group of Southern California, which was formed by the merger of PBS SoCal and KCETLink Media Group. As one of Southern California’s two flagship PBS stations, KCET is on-air, online as well as in the community, and plays a vital role in the cultural enrichment of Southern California. KCET offers a wide range of award-winning local programming as well as the finest public television programs from around the world. Throughout its 55-year history, KCET has won hundreds of major awards for its local and regional news and public affairs programming, its national drama and documentary productions and its website, kcet.org. For additional information about KCET’s original productions, web-exclusive content, programming schedules and community events, please visit kcet.org. KCET Originals and PBS programming are available to stream on the FREE PBS App on iOS and Android devices, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Android TV, Samsung Smart TV, and Chromecast. KCET is also available to watch live on YouTube TV.

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